The 3rd Battalion, 13th Field Artillery Regiment (Red Dragons) welcomed a new battalion commander Wednesday during a change of command ceremony on Fort Sill.
Lt. Col. Elijah Ward ceremonially took the colors from his predecessor, Lt. Col Corrie Brice, during a ceremony at the Old Post Quadrangle.
Ward didn’t have to move far for his first battalion command. He returned to Fort Sill in 2020 to serve as the Extended Range Cannon Artillery Requirements Officer on the Long Range Precision Fires Cross Functional Team.
Ward will not have much time to get acquainted with his unit before the Red Dragons deploy later this year for nine months to the Republic of Korea to support 8th Army and the 2nd Infantry Division.
“Fortunately, he is a proven leader, serving skillfully most recently as a requirements manager in the Long Range Precision Fires Cross Functional Team,” said Col. 75th Field Artillery Brigade Commander, Col. Ryan McCormack. “You are now on a path of great courage and an opportunity to serve these Red Dragon soldiers and families. I know that you’ll do a great job.”
Brice, the outgoing commander, took time to thank many of his former soldiers by name as well as his wife and children. He also addressed the battalion, as a whole, to let them know he wished he could stay with them on the eve of their upcoming deployment.
“It’s not lost on me that you went through all of these achievements, crucibles, trials and tribulations with me at the wheel, for me not going forward with you to Korea. As you can imagine, I feel some sort of way about that,” Brice said. “You’ve done so much for each other over the last two years to make the Red Dragon team stronger together. You’ve been through the thick and thicker together and I know you will continue to raise the bar when you get to Korea because you know the Red Dragon’s and your reputations already precede you.”
Ward said he looks forward to commanding the Red Dragons both on Fort Sill and the deployment to Korea.
“This is a great opportunity to command here at the Red Dragons and Fort Sill,” Ward said. “I have a great deal of confidence that the battalion has been trained by Colonel Brice, who I’ve known for years, to the level they need to be to go to Korea, and with my experience in Korea, I know kind of where they need to be. So we’re very excited and we were very confident.”